It’s not every day that you have a chance to sign one of the best closers in the history of the game. Sure, he likely won’t be a closer with LA, but the Dodgers absolutely need to do whatever it takes to try and sign Craig Kimbrel to a contract.
After the Bryce Harper and Manny Machado sweepstakes came to an end, all the attention has shifted to the forgotten big-name free agent on the market, Craig Kimbrel.
Kimbrel, 30, is coming off a season in which he went 5-1 with a 2.74 ERA. He also had 42 saves, his most since the 2014 season.
Yes, I know, I know, the Dodgers already have a closer. A pretty damn good one at that. But, you have a chance to form the greatest eighth-ninth duo in the game.
As we’ve seen, Kenley Jansen has struggled with health recently, and he’s no guarantee to make it an entire season without hitting the DL. Also, it should be noted, Jansen has an opt-out at the end of the 2019 season. Not saying he’s going to leave, or he even opts out, but it is something to keep an eye on.
It’s been reported that Kimbrel is seeking over $100 million. I’ll say this now. There’s absolutely no way he gets that from the Dodgers. Frankly, I don’t think he’ll get that from any team. There has never been a reliever to get that kind of money, and with how stingy teams have become as of late, I don’t see it happening anytime soon.
So, what exactly should the Dodgers do?
Offer him a one-year deal worth whatever he wants. Now, of course, lets keep it within reason. But if he were to ask for a one-year deal worth $25 million, the Dodgers should 100 percent offer that to him.
As it stands, the Dodgers do have one of the better bullpens in the national league, but they can become the clear best if they were to add Kimbrel.
It’s unclear as to whether or not Kimbrel would be open to signing with a team where he won’t be a guaranteed closer. Clearly, he wants to get his money. And clearly, teams are hesitant to give it to him, and with good reason.
Yesterday I took to Twitter, and asked Dodgers fans what they thought of offering Kimbrel a one-year contract. For the tweets sake, I said for only $20 million a year. With nearly 1,000 votes, 68 percent of fans said LA should sign Kimbrel.
Again, bullpen isn’t necessarily a huge need for the Dodgers, but signing Kimbrel for a short-term deal would be a huge move for the team.
The season starts in a few weeks, and Kimbrel doesn’t have a team, nor does he look close to signing with one. If we wants to get his money this season, and have a chance to compete for a title, the Dodgers seem like a match made in heaven.